Tracking Sasquatch (field report #1)
5 minutes, 2010
A search for the elusive Sasquatch. The first chapter in an ongoing series. [with text from various Sasquatch field guides and one of my favourite TV shows – MANTRACKER]
A little bit About the Tracking Sasquatch Series:
Tracking Sasquatch – An ongoing series of films and videos
Christina Battle 2010 –> ongoing
A google search for ‘Bigfoot videos’ returns ‘About 57,800,000 results.’*
Our collective interest in a creature whose existence hovers at the fringes of science yet remains at the forefront of our popular conscious fascinates me. With sighting videos uploaded and shared to YouTube on a daily basis – both as legitimate attempts to share sighting experiences and obvious tongue-in-cheek hoaxes – its clear that we are captivated by the myth of the elusive creature and that some part of us wants them to be real. The ways in which individuals use the moving image to document and falsify sightings of cryptids and other unexplained phenomenon is of special interest to me. From the first and still undisputed film documenting Bigfoot’s existence (The Patterson film, 1967) to the hundreds of sightings videos people share on YouTube everyday, I wonder how our notions of evidence for such unknowns might change as the accessibility and capabilities of video increase. In today’s media-saturated world what does ‘seeing it to believe it’ really mean? With so many videos now a part of our collectively constructed archive I wonder about the role such videos play within the historical record, regardless of their proximity to fact or fiction. Considering the dichotomy between official (government) and unofficial (documented by individuals) archives of unexplained sightings, I wonder what makes one archive more valid than the other. I’m interested in considering what is left out from official records and how the subjective nature of the official not only changes our contemporary understandings of the past but also how it might shape the historical views of future generations.
The Tracking Sasquatch Series is an ongoing research project considering some of these ideas. Through moving image the short works exploit narrative structures and techniques that are often used to situate documentations of sightings as truthful. Pulling from strategies used in horror movies the films and videos play on the unique qualities that moving images hold in playing on our sense of anticipation and belief.
*google search – 03/05/2013 at 8.56 AM